There’s a moment when all us Yankees living down here in Texas, wake up on the first cold-snap, excited to finally get that chilly weather we’ve been waiting for—the weather that numbs the toes in mid-October; that sort of cold doesn’t happen in Texas until December or January, but this year it’s a little early. We’re out there for about ten minutes before we realize…there’s a reason we moved to Texas.
As we admit to ourselves that we’ve become wimpy fair-weather Texans, we dart back into our homes; the same home we’ve designed to keep us cool during the seven-month summers. Our wood floors (worse if you’re tile people, like me!) are freezing, the windows are crying like wet babies, and those walls meant to keep the cool in, aren’t keeping the cool out!
Damn you Texas for what you’ve done to me.
In my past, I’d made it through years of snowstorms in the Northeast, I even did some winter time at the Great Lakes Naval base in Waukeegan – It was the coldest two weeks of my life. Could I do any of that now? Hell no. Texas has killed my ability to withstand the cold.
In other life-related news:
- Finished NaNoWriMo last night – Novel 2 is complete.
- Missed volunteering at Austin Comic Con due to a writing deadline on a paying project.
- Was extremely annoyed that Grimm and Dracula were pre-empted by a doc on Kennedy Assassination. Hey NBC, there’s a plethora of channels out there now that broadcast this stuff–let them do it!
- American Horror Story is still the only show on TV with a dominant female cast. Loving It.
- My last day working at the bank is December 13, a Friday. >_> Hmmm.
- IT’S FUCKING COLD HERE. COLD.
November’s here without a hitch.
Every year I participate in NaNoWriMo—a project that seems to be the bane of some published authors on the net, because it dares to push those that may not be ‘real writers’, into sitting down and trying to write a novel. I don’t know where the disdain comes from–oh wait, I do. It’s about having and judging those that – have not. Every college offers a ‘creative writing’ or ‘writing’ course, these classes contain some students in it that are there for just the credits; perhaps being pushed to ‘write something down’ is what they need to give them a creative direction. I consider NaNoWriMo to be that college course. Many of us taking part are serious about writing, and for some of us that have been published and paid for our efforts, it’s a great motivator–but not everyone is at the top of the class. So what. Do they have to be? I don’t like elitism in any form, so when I see authors sniggering at NaNoWriMo, it rubs me the wrong way. A large portion of writers partaking aren’t going to publish their books on KINDLE (which seems to be the primary criticism ranking on the net), only the ones that are driven to share their works, will take it to the next level. I think that drive is also a creative force, and I’d never discourage anyone from trying to do something, with anything they’ve created. Will many of them fuck up and not pay for a pro edit, probably, but the reviews will teach them a lesson.
Ending my tangent on NaNoWriMo, here’s where I am as of November 10th
On a more personal front…
So Aetna, my spouse’s insurance company, has decided to follow the rest of the insurance companies, and alter the insurance plans offered to corporate, and big-business. The Affordable Care Act (which is needed, I’m sorry) has laid down the law for these insurance conglomerates—you cannot deny anyone coverage because of a pre-existing condition. So yes, Humana, Aetna, et al, are in the ACA marketplace—not by choice I’m sure. In order to make up for taking on so much “risk” (risk=insured with a pre-existing condition), many of these companies have passed on the extra cost of risk by altering or changing the tiers of coverage currently offered to their customers. Some companies will do the right thing and just pay the extra cost, others however, will opt for a cheaper (newly designed) tier of coverage, that may not be the best for their employees.
My spouses company is doing this.
As of 1/1/2014, gone is our copay, and in it’s place, a half-assed FSA. Flex spending accounts are a form of co-insurance, and they kinda suck. I blame Aetna (and these others companies) to a degree, they are a business, in fact, they are the businesses that have created this free-market nightmare that makes American healthcare so insane—but my spouses company doesn’t get a pass from me. They’re not publicly traded, they had record profits last year (they create 2D and 3D design software), so for their board to make a decision that clearly puts their employee’s LAST, sort of bites. I also realize that this is a company that overpays its upper-management, so I guess cutting costs on that front just wasn’t an option. :/ We’re debt-free, and our kiddos are in their late teens, so all in all, the only concern we’ll face in terms of shouldering co-insurance costs, will be in our old age. >_< Spouse will be retired by then, and maybe I’ll have a best-seller out there??? Wishful thinking.
In lighter news, my spouse and I have discovered Grimm. We’re marathon watching it on Amazon Prime, and I truly like this show. How I avoided it for two years is beyond me.